The last year has brought about incredible change in the federal workforce, and it shows no sign of stopping. With a new Director for the Office of Personnel and Management (OPM) confirmed, the next several months will bring new energy and activity to formalizing and standardizing workplace policies, processes, and approaches for the "new normal" of a digital-first government.
The move to telework changed how many people view and even perform their jobs. Before the pandemic, telework was sporadically used throughout government and viewed pretty skeptically. Now that the genie is out of the bottle, it's clear that government can continue to function without people in office buildings from 9am-5pm. As in-person work starts to come back around, the new shift will be in defining and managing a hybrid workforce.
When federal employees get together for training and meetings, fancy lunches aren't on the menu anymore. In fact, food of any kind -- tuna fish sandwiches, green salad, oatmeal cookies -- can no longer be served by the government. Even coffee is off-limits.
Scientists at the Food and Drug Administration and other agencies say they can no longer travel to academic conferences to present their research.
And mental-health workers at military hospitals say they are in danger of losing their licenses because they can't attend refresher courses.
Three years after the Obama administration clamped down on travel and training in response to the uproar over a Las Vegas conference where hundreds of federal workers partied for four days at taxpayer expense, the restrictions are taking an unanticipated toll. Employees at a wide range of agencies say the rules are gumming up the machinery of government. Continue reading →
From time to time GovEvents will come across information we feel our members and audience would benefit from. Here's something we wanted to share:
The Office of Management and Budget has a long list of governmentwide priorities -- among them are more federal spending with small businesses, more use of strategic sourcing in the procurement process and less spending on government conferences.
With regard to those three priorities, the Department of the Navy thinks its brand new contract vehicle for conference planning services is a trifecta.
The Navy made blanket purchase agreement awards to 17 firms -- all of them small businesses -- on May 31 in an attempt to take a strategic sourcing approach to the way the Navy and Marine Corps plan and pay for their conferences.
It seems you can't turn around these days without hearing about another government conference scandal. But what gets lost in the horror stories of magicians and fancy hotel suits is the real reason why these conferences are essential for govies, learning.
Several weeks ago I participated as a panelist at two events for government marketing professionals. At both theMid-Atlantic Marketing Summit, and the GovMark Council's panel on Life After Tradeshows Part II, much of the conversation focused on how marketers were dealing with decreased attendance from government attendees at live events.
Those in attendance shared common questions and angst. How long will the events drought last? What impact will Sequestration have? How do I get government speakers to commit and government employees to attend? How can I use money that was earmarked for cancelled trade shows to support my sales pipeline? Will virtual conferences replace in-person events? What should I tell my sales team?